Children attacked by PSNI
Children attacked by PSNI

A 10-year-old was sprayed with CS gas by the PSNI police on Saturdaay night in an unprovoked attack.

Peter Tubridy had been on his way to the shops at around 10pm in the Shaws Road area in the west of the city when he was grabbed by a member of the PSNI and threatened with arrest.

Neighbour Jim Connolly witnessed the incident on Saturday night and described how he and his 12-year-old son were also sprayed after he went to plead with the officer to let Peter go.

“I had been in the front room with my son Stephen playing a game on the computer when I saw cops running up and street. When I went out I saw one of them had young Peter up against the railings with his hands behind his back. I went over and told him that Peter was only ten but he turned round, told me to stand back, and then sprayed me full in the face with CS spray.”

Incapacitated by the spray, Jim says he had to hold onto nearby railings to make sure he didn’t fall over. He said that the PSNI were in no danger when they used the debilitating CS gas.

“They were under no threat from me or anyone who I saw. There were about thirty cops and only three adults. I was out in my flip flops and vest, all I wanted to do was let them know that Peter was only ten years old.”

Jim’s 12-year-old son Stephen was also hit with the spray when he went out to help his father after seeing him struggling to stand. Stephen’s mum Brenda says she has had to have him on a nebulizer since last night because of the reaction he had to the CS spray.

“You couldn’t breathe in the house because of the smell of them when they came back in. I wasn’t even out of the house and it was affecting me. Stephen has been on the nebulizer ever since to help him breathe.”

Mr Connolly said he will be contacting the Police Ombudsman’s office today following an incident.

Sinn Féin councilor Gerard O’Neill was on the scene when the trouble broke out and condemned the PSNI for their handling of the situation.

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© 2006 Irish Republican News